Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Norwin Has a Winning Philosophy

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Norwin Has a Winning Philosophy

Article excerpt

Norwin coach Dave Brozeski tries to get his players to buy into the "Let's take it one game at a time" mentality, while working by the philosophy that no game is bigger than that one directly in front of them.

Still, Brozeski couldn't help but do a little reminiscing a few days after his team's most recent game, a 28-12 triumph against Connellsville last Friday.

"It was a huge. One of our goals is to go 1-0 every week. Last week's ability to go 1-0 was also able to get us into the playoffs," said Brozeski, in his first year as head coach after spending the past 17 seasons as a Norwin assistant.

Norwin is playoff bound for the first time since 2010. The Knights (5-2, 4-2) have won two games in a row and are tied with Altoona and Plum for third place in the Class AAAA Foothills Conference. With two conference games remaining, the Knights can finish no worse than fifth in the conference. In Class AAAA, the top five teams in each of the three conferences qualify for the postseason, in addition to one wild-card team.

Ending a three-year playoff drought is a much-welcomed accomplishment at Norwin. Just three years ago, the Knights were winless. The Knights finished 2-7 each of the past two seasons.

Brozeski said he has been most impressed by the chemistry the team has formed, one that has put the Knights in position to win all of their games. The only losses were narrow defeats to Plum, 23-14, and at Altoona, 30-21.

The Knights have made significant improvements on both sides of the ball from last season. A year ago, the Knights scored 11.9 points per game and allowed 22.3. This season, the Knights have pretty much reversed those numbers, upping their scoring average to 22.3 points, while holding foes to 10.7. Only three Class AAAA teams have stingier defenses. The Knights have given up a total of 22 points in their five wins.

A strong balance has benefited the Norwin offense. Junior quarterback Nick Amendola has passed for more than 600 yards and six touchdowns, while junior running back Peyton Deri has rushed for 614 yards and seven touchdowns. …

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